How India secured four major strategic victories in 14 days amid pandemic

New DelhiEdited By: Gravitas deskUpdated: May 07, 2021, 06:41 PM IST


Story highlights

14 days, four strategic wins in four different sectors - India has shown how national interest can be upheld even in times of adversity.

New Delhi has made four strategic moves: a successful TRIPS waiver, an unofficial ban on Huawei, customer restrictions on Amex and a potential trade deal with the European Union.

The deals involve four different sectors - all of them aimed at keeping India's place intact in the global order with efforts aimed at upholding national interest even in times of adversity.

The story began on April 23 as the Reserve Bank of India imposed restrictions on two financial services giants: the American Express banking corp or Amex and and Diners Club International Ltd. Both were barred from signing up new customers on their credit card networks because they flouted rules and refused to store financial data in India.

The RBI's decision does not impact existing customers but it will go a long way in stopping data breaches and financial scams, not to mention make other credit card issuers follow the rules.

On May 4, came the second big step in the telecom sector. India quarantined China's fastest horse in the 5G race - Huawei. The department of telecommunications barred Huawei from the upcoming 5G trials for the obvious reason - cybersecurity.

The risk Huawei poses to telecom sectors globally has long been established as countries like Australia, Japan, US, UK, Czech Republic and Sweden have already banned or restricted Huawei. They have accused the Chinese telecom giant of serving as a vector for Chinese espionage.

India's decision was a long time coming and it hurts Huawei's prospects in a market that is as big as China's. 

The third big strategic win came on May 5 after the European Union announced that it will revive stalled trade talks with India with India-Eu summit to be held on May 8th, if an agreement is reached not only will India benefit in securing a resilient medical supply chain, it will also pull the European Union away from China which is its biggest competitor in the Indo-Pacific.

The EU has already rejected plans to ratify a trade deal with Beijing. Reports say it's only a matter of time before it signs one with New Delhi.

Finally, on May 6, came the fourth big strategic win in the health sector as the Biden administration announced its support to India's proposal with the lifting of patent protections to help produce more vaccines globally.

The Indian embassy in Washington led by ambassador Taranjit Singh Sandhu was joined by South African embassy officials in pushing the US lawmakers and the World Trade Organisation for a temporary waiver with Washington voicing its support.

It shouldn't be long before a global consensus is reached. 14 days, four strategic wins in four different sectors - India has shown how national interest can be upheld even in times of adversity.